Tenants trying to lower rents reaches record low

AFS Team·6 February 2020·4 min read
Tenants trying to lower rents reaches record low

Tenants trying to lower rents reaches record low

The number of tenants who have successfully negotiated a rent reduction rent has reached a record low, a new survey reveals.

According to the analysis published by Arla Propertymark, they say the number of tenants who negotiated a rent reduction has fallen from November's figure of 1.6% to 1.1% in December.

The organisation says that's the lowest proportion since records began.

Also, they say that the proportion of letting agents who saw rents rise remained static at 32%.

The data also highlights that tenant demand fell during December, with each member branch having 56 prospective tenants registered with them. That's down from November's figure of 67.

Arla says that this is now the third consecutive month that tenant demand has fallen.

The number of homes being managed

However, the supply of rental stock has seen the number of homes being managed in each member branch rising to 206 from 203.

The chief executive of Arla, David Cox, said: "Our data shows that since the Tenancy Fees ban, rents reached an all-time high in 2019.

"We've seen a slight drop in letting agent number who witness landlords putting rents up since then, with rents overall remaining high and tenants are finding it harder to negotiate a rent reduction."

He added: "Tenants will find it more difficult to find suitable homes if rents continue to rise.

"And now there's a new government, it's important that overdue legislative changes for making the market attractive again are implemented for both landlords and tenants."

Demand for inventories rocket

Meanwhile, demand from landlords for unbiased inventory reports for their properties has seen demand rocketing this year.

According to the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC), the demand is not just coming from landlords but also from large letting agencies looking for annual contracts.

The chairman of the AIIC, Danny Zane, said: "The lettings market has been evolving in recent years, regarding compliance and regulations, and it seems it will carry on doing so. Already confirmed this year is are electrical safety certificates for landlords."

The importance of providing inventory and checkout reports

He added: "We believe the lettings industry understands the importance of providing inventory and checkout reports and making sure they are compiled by an unbiased, third party."

Mr Zane pointed out that one of the big issues in 2019 was a surge in fake inventory reporting, which makes it possible for rogue agents and landlords to then con tens of thousands of pounds from tenants by making false claims against their deposit.